We don’t often eat out as a family as I’m always too nervous that the kids might have a tantrum and that it would be too stressful. But the other day we actually had a really relaxing Sunday lunch at Giraffe in Reading, the kids had a brilliant time and we all got to enjoy our food. Though Lily had just woken up from a nap in this photo, so we had to give her a few minutes to warm up. And Tyler obviously couldn’t put the pizza down to smile!
The menu has recently been revamped, still foods from around the world but simplified I would say. The prices are lower than what they were. The kids menu was a main, drink and dessert for £6.50 and they each got a goody bag which was pretty exciting. Inside was a giraffe face mask and crayons for the activity sheet. And they got the famous Giraffe stirrers. This all kept Tyler and Lily happy for the whole 2 hours we were there – win!
The restaurant has had a makeover, it’s all very modern and funky, lots of bright colours.
I always like these types of displays with plants, very inspirational.
We were looked after by a lovely lady called Lizzie who had some good recommendations on what to choose on the menu. She took our order and the food came quickly thanks to this new technology they now have. I had a fresh lemonade with mint (£2.30), which came in a trendy jar glass. It was delish – very thirst-quenching 🙂 We had some nibbles first, Olives (£2.50) and Piquante Peppers (£3.95) – these were stuffed with cream cheese and were soooo yum. Lily ate most of the olives, as we woke her up from her nap then.
For starters we chose Salt and Pepper Squid (£3.95) and Chicken Gyoza (£4.95) – these are Japanese dumplings filled with chicken, absolutely delish and a good size for a starter. In fact I couldn’t finish them!
For the main I chose the Katsu Chicken Curry bowl (£9.95) – another Japanese dish for me, hehe. It’s breaded chicken with katsu curry sauce and sticky jasmine rice. It was plated up so prettily, and I just loved it. I couldn’t finish the rice though, it was a big portion.
My husband chose the Penang Bang Salad (£9.95) which is grilled chicken breast with crushed peanuts, rice noodles, bok choi, Chinese leaf, cucumber, beansprouts, sugar snaps and radishes, in a lime, chilli and ginger dressing (okay, I got that description from the menu as that’s a lot of ingredients!) – he says it was really good.
The kids each had their own meal. The kids menu actually has a lot of choices for the main, including Katsu curry! But we went for food we knew they would eat. Tyler had pizza (well it’s called Cheese & Tomato Flatbread on the menu) with a cup of milk. And Lily had Fish Fingers, Chips and Baked Beans with a Fruit Shoot. We also got a separate side of chips for Tyler (£2.50). He went through the pizza, it was a hit. Lily ate the chips, but she was a bit funny about the fish fingers – perhaps because they were more rustic looking than the Birds Eye fish fingers she’s used to!
We took our time eating. We chose 2pm to have lunch so the main lunch hour was over, which meant it wasn’t too busy and we could relax. The atmosphere was great, upbeat music, and so much to look at. We had a cosy corner booth that was by a funky graffiti wall and we had a good view of the restaurant. Light streams through the big front windows. It’s just a really nice place to have a meal! There was outdoor seating too, but I think that’s more suited to child-free people as it’s open onto the main walkway along the river.
We never felt rushed, so we ordered dessert once we had some room in our tummies after those big mains. The kids had vanilla ice cream (Tyler’s choice). And my husband chose Churros with chocolate sauce (£3.95). Both were gone very quickly. These kids love ice cream, and you can see here the giraffe getting a bite too. I can’t believe how much these little giraffe stirrers entertained them! There was a basket of childrens books by our table, but they weren’t needed. Still it’s good to know, this is definitely a family-friendly restaurant.
Loos are upstairs, but there is also a disabled with baby change on the ground floor. This photo shows the view from our corner booth. I couldn’t stop looking at the ceiling lights, such an interesting design.
We left happy, the kids got balloons and it was a really lovely way to spend an afternoon. The restaurant is on Reading’s riverside, by the Oracle shopping centre. We went went for a walk along the river and back through the shopping centre, having a quick browse before the shops closed.
If you are looking for a family-friendly restaurant that is reasonably priced, we can totally recommend Giraffe in Reading. It’s a short train trip from Slough (£9.20 return ticket), and it’s a good place to eat if you are having a shopping trip there. Great food, lovely atmosphere, friendly staff and trendy decor. Thumbs up!
Giraffe, Riverside, The Oracle, Reading, RG1 2AG
Do you eat out with your family often? Where is your favourite place to eat?
Disclosure: We were given complimentary meals for the purpose of this review. These are all my own honest opinions as always.